John Manke is an active former Bay View resident who is involved in numerous neighborhood organizations, including the Bay View Historical Society, the Humboldt Park Fourth of July Association and the Shore Shore Farmers Market. He believes Bay View has a fine tradition in its past that we do not want to lose in the future.
In 1910, due to a multitude of injuries to children and adults from playing with fireworks, a committee got together in Bay View to form a Safe and Sane 4th of July Association. This later became known as the Humboldt Park 4th of July Association. People were becoming maimed, blinded, lost limbs and fingers all because of careless use of fireworks. This committee set up a full day of activities for the entire family to partake of and also to have a controlled fireworks display at the end of the day. This group was so successful, that the City of Milwaukee founded its own 4th of July Commission in 1911 to spread this type of celebration to the whole city of Milwaukee. Throughout the years the activities and the prizes have changed to reflect the times. Now we are trying to continue this Independence Day celebration into the present and future for a new generation of families to enjoy. Our members are aging, and more younger input and help is needed to continue our work. As a child you can remember how you took part in the celebration of the 4th of July. I am sure that you do not want it to cease to continue due to lack of financial support or of volunteers to set up and organize the day's event. Please consider giving up some of your valuable time to assist us in this matter. Financial needs are also there for funding this event. We have the best 4th of July celebration in all of Milwaukee. Please help us now in our time of need to continue into the future for our children and grandchildren to enjoy as much as we did when we were young. Please support the Humboldt Park 4th of July Association.